In these fifteen remarkable stories, M.F.K. Fisher, one of the most admired writers of our time, embraces age as St. Francis welcomed Brother Pain. With a saint to guide us, she writes in her Foreword, perhaps we can accept in a loving way "the inevitable visits of a possibly nagging harpy like Sister Age." But in the stories, it is the human strength in the unavoidable encounter with the end of life that Mrs. Fisher dramatizes so powerfully. Other themes-the importance of witnessing death, the marvelous resilience of the old, the passing of vanity-are all explored with insight, sympathy and, often, a sly wit. Book jacket.